Breaking Ground: Laela Jeyne

Hey, friends! Want to see some sewing on this sewing blog? Me too!

I am joining the fabulously talented Melissa from Mahlica Designs for the 2019 Breaking Ground Blog Tour. I mentioned back in January that I was participating by making the Dani Joggers from Laela Jeyne patterns. I was pretty excited to make these because my True Bias Hudson joggers get worn a lot since I work from home now. I like to wear comfy clothes most days and joggers are my new found love. Unfortunately, the Hudson’s don’t go up to my size and I had to get creative with the only pair I made by adding a tuxedo strip down the sides. It worked, but if I want to make more I need to do a whole redraft to change the crotch curve for more depth and add more rise to the waist as those are my biggest issues now. I just have not felt like putting that much effort into a pattern that wasn’t meant for my body. This is where the Dani Joggers come in!

Layla Jeyne was founded by Marisa in 2014, and somehow I only recently heard about them within the last 6 months. I am so glad I did though. Her women’s patterns go from an XXS-3X or a 00-26. She has a pretty great selection of patterns including a couple of swimsuits. But the thing I am most excited about, even though it doesn’t apply to me, is that she includes maternity versions in with the non-maternity patterns for a few of her designs at no additional cost. I think that is awesome for sewists to be able to make both versions for the cost of only one pattern.

I made the cropped length with cuffs in an XL size. My measurements are only 1″ bigger than those in the size chart for that size and I decided that with the amount of ease that the modeled pics had I could get away with it. Also, I used a Ponte knit instead of a woven so I had the stretch factor on my side. Yeah, this pattern does call for using a lightweight woven such as a challis, chambray, or Tencel denim. My stash does not have any wovens in prints that I thought I would want to wear as joggers. Instead, I turned to my ever growing knit stash and I don’t regret it.

The Ponte I picked doesn’t have much stretch from selvage to selvage and none from top to bottom. It is a fun print in pastel blue and pink from Fabric Mart that I ordered back in 2016. I have pulled it out many times since then and just could not decide what it wanted to become. When I decided to use a knit for these joggers it was one of those “Ah-ha” moments. For the version I made, the pattern calls for 2 yards (45″ or 54″ wide) for all sizes, I use 1.75yds and my Ponte was 58″ wide. For the contrasting cuffs and waistband, I used .25 yards of a solid black Ponte from Jo-Ann Fabrics. All in all my fabric costs for this project total $8.93. Other notions included 1.5″ elastic for the waistband, which I magically found in my notions stash, and a drawstring. I bought a spool of black twill tape in the ribbon and trim section of Jo-Ann’s to use. I think I used about half the spool, so I should be able to get another pair using the rest.

Typically, when I sew these days, I rarely look at the directions. I can figure out how something needs to go together just by looking at the line art and pieces thanks to me working as a technical designer in the fashion industry. But I knew I needed to follow these instructions so I could give a fair review here and they are good. They are written in a clear and concise manner that made these a joy to sew up. The only real issue I had was when I was cutting out the pieces I noticed the leg cuffs only indicate to cut one instead of two. That is the only error I noticed. Even the grading between sizes made sense. There were no weird bumps or awkwardness for the larger sizes.

I cannot believe this is the first time I am trying this brand. I am liking a lot of Marisa’s patterns. Next up I want to try the Scarlett Jeans, which are a take on the moto jeans trend. Also on my list is the Sable Sweater. That just looks like the perfect fall/winter sweater to wear on a cold day with leggings while lounging on the couch with a hot tea and a good book.

Have you tried Laela Jeyne Patterns yet?

Check out the rest of the Breaking Ground Blog Tour 2019. This year over 25 bloggers from around the world are joining with me to break new ground by trying a pattern designer that is new to them, try new techniques, new styles, or whatever way they want to push themselves. (Read on for Giveaway info)

The Full Tour includes all these creatives… we hope you’ll visit us each day:

Monday March 11That’s Sew Lily, Sewing A La Carte, Mijn 11jes & ik

Tuesday March 12mahlicadesigns, Embrace Everyday, Jot Designs, auschick sews, Raising Stripling Warriors

Wednesday March 13Musings of A Seamstress, Very Blissful, Sew4Five, Just Sew Something, Hazelnut Handmade, Crafting Through Time, Tales From A Southern Mom

Thursday March 14Make It Sew with the Bear and Pea Atelier, Ronda B Handmade, SequioaLynn Sews, Sewing with D, The Sewing Goatherd, OOYAmade, My Golden Thimble, Custom Made by Laura

Friday March 15Sew Cute Couture by Kathy, Sewing Novice, Ronda B Handmade, Momma Bear Sews, MeMade, My Golden Thimble, Lulu & Celeste

Breaking News: our tour sponsor Phat Quarters is offering 2 patterns of choice from her pattern shop to one lucky winner.

Enter Here!

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We’d love to see how you’re Breaking Ground this month. Share with us what you’re working on by using the hashtag #BreakingGround2019 across social media.

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Sunday Lately: Chancing, Getting, Lounging

We are in week 10 of the Sunday Lately series and I am soooo late getting this out today. Sunday is nearly over. If you are new to Sunday Lately, it is a weekly series for the Blogger Co-op featuring three prompts to get us writing and sharing our stories from the past week. Each blogger can interpret these topics however they choose in their post. Then we all link back to Katy to share with each other. This week we are talking about chancing, getting, and lounging.

Chancing:

This week I have been chancing my luck with sizing by making a new McCall’s pattern without making a mock-up or tissue fitting it. I loved McCall’s 7906 when I first saw it and knew I wanted to make it immediately. So I jumped right in without doing any of the behind the scenes work of fitting it. Based on the finished measurements I knew I needed to add 2″ to the waist. I added a 1/2″ to each the front and back side seam as there are only two pieces for this pattern. Luckily, my chancy gamble paid off and the skirt fits well in the waist. I will be sharing it on the Cali Fabrics blog at the end of the month.

Getting:

On Friday, I finally got around to going to Vogue Fabrics. We have been here almost two years now and I am just now making the hour and 30-minute trek up north. I went with Stephanie from the Make & Decorate podcast so I could find yellow silk georgette for a client’s gown. I did find the most perfect yellow for it too. In addition to the georgette, I found a couple of fabrics for myself. I got three yards of a poly georgette with a blue plaid that is printed to look like it is on the bias. I have no idea what I am going to use it for yet, but at $1.99/yard I couldn’t leave it there. The other piece I picked up is three yards of a dark stretch denim for $5.99/yard. The denim is 97% cotton 3% spandex. I plan on using it to make a muslin pair of jeans before cutting into my much treasured Cone Mills denim.

Lounging:

My favorite lounge around the house pants are my joggers. I finished my second pair last week and will be blogging about them on Wednesday for the Breaking Ground Blog Tour. I am excited to share these and make some more.

 

Check out the FB Blogger Co-op group for a list of future Sunday Lately topics. I hope you will join us! What are you chancing, getting, or lounging this week?

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Sunday Weekly: Updating, Building, Hiding

We are in week 8 of the Sunday Lately series. If you are new to Sunday Lately, it is a weekly series for the Blogger Co-op featuring three prompts to get us writing and sharing our stories from the past week. Each blogger can interpret these topics however they choose in their post. Then we all link back to Katy to share with each other. This week we are talking about updating, building, and hiding.

Updating:

I took last Sunday off from writing a Sunday Lately post. Why? Well, we have changed the name from Blogger Tribe to Blogger Co-op in an effort to be more sensitive to indigenous peoples.  So, instead of posting last week I waited until the graphics were updated. I am excited about this update and hope that you will join us.

Building:

I can’t really say I have been building anything this past week. I haven’t made anything this week. I even put a ban on fabric buying, so there is no stash building. Same goes for patterns but I did purchase one pattern since Bella Sunshine Designs (affiliate link) is having an anniversary sale of 40% off.

Hiding:

This past week I have been hiding in my house recovering from a terrible head cold which has turned into a sinus infection. Even my Instagram has been quiet. I have stayed home because I am just plain tired and I didn’t want to get anyone else sick. Unfortunately, this means that I have not done much of any sewing. I have an Aster blouse hanging over my head that I have been trying to finish since the end of November. Agh…I need to finish it so I can start my next projects.

Check out the FB Blogger Co-op group for a list of future Sunday Lately topics. I hope you will join us! What are you updating, building, or hiding this week?

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Meet Coraline & Primrose

For a sewing blog, there hasn’t been much sewing around here lately. Well, today I have three new pieces that I am excited to share. It is no secret that I pattern test for Bella Sunshine Designs and I love their patterns. Last week they launched six new patterns, a camisole and a pair of panties for women, girls, and dolls.

The Coraline Camisole comes in three lengths: cami, tunic, and dress.  For this version, I made the dress length. Mine is cut with a 14 bust, 18 waist, and 16 hip. My measurements are 43″ upper bust, 46″ full bust, 40″ waist, and 47″ hip.

I managed to squeak this dress version out of a single yard of 58″ wide rayon jersey knit by folding the selvage edges in towards the center. This piece came from a Girl Charlee Black Friday sale in 2014. It cost me a whooping $2.50! I love a good deal. I also used this fabric for a previous maxi dress in 2016, but this new dress is the last of it.

I am unsure of how I want to wear this dress. Part of me thinks it would be great to wear this summer with a lightweight cardigan, but then I also think it will make an amazingly comfortable sleep dress. One thing I am sure about is that I will definitely be making more the dress length though. It is such an instant gratification sew. Two pieces (front and back) stitched at the side seams, hem it, stitch on the elastic, and done. Easy peasy.

This is my second version in the tunic length. I made this one specifically as sleepwear. The fabric I used for this one is an ITY knit from Jo-Ann’s that I picked up in 2016 with the intention of making an Appleton Dress, which I also recently made.  Somehow, when I purchased this I asked for three yards and instead ended up with a fourth yard for free. Instead of letting this one yard linger I used it for this tunic. I added a fuschia fold over elastic (FOE) that matched the roses around the neckline, back, and straps.

I love that this pattern uses FOE.  I found so many different FOE color and print options on Etsy for super cheap thanks to some other testers. I will definitely be stocking up on it to make more of these. I foresee a lot of cami length versions in my future to replace my ready to wear camis. But this tunic length is perfect to pair it with the Primrose Panties for a sleep set so I am sure I will make more of these too.

Speaking of Primrose, I did make a matching pair to go with this tunic. This is the high rise brief, but there are also options for a low rise brief or a high or low rise hipster. I think these are amazing and I want to try all the versions! It is my first time making myself undies and I could not have picked a better pattern. I love the technique used for adding the gusset and encasing all the seams. There are even options to use FOE if you don’t want the fabric bands. I am going to make more of these and I definitely want to hack it to make a bikini bottom. This is a great pattern to use up small bits of scraps and stash.

Both of these patterns are on sale right now for a limited time! I recommend checking them out for sure.

What do you think? Have you tried making your own undies?

 

**Note all links are affiliate links and I earn a small commission from any purchases made using them. They do not change your shopping experience one bit.

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Sunday Lately: Needing, Cooking, Hitting

Welcome to week 6 of the Sunday Lately series. If you are new to Sunday Lately, it is a weekly series for the Blogger Tribe featuring three prompts to get us writing and sharing our stories from the past week. Each blogger can interpret these topics however they choose in their post. Then we all link back to Katy to share with each other. This week we are talking about needing, cooking, and hitting.

Needing:

What I really need right now is some decent weather. I have a stack of garments waiting to be photographed but the weather has been so cold. I just do not want to venture out in my latest spring/summer dress makes while it is still below 20 degrees. If not for some warm enough weather, I am hoping for some sunny days that I can at least get some okay indoors shots that are not too dark.

Cooking:

This past week, I haven’t done as much cooking as I normally would, but I still made some really great meals. I have the most amazing brownie recipe pinned. This week I made it for the second time and it doesn’t disappoint. Also made this week were chicken enchiladas in green sauce and glazed orange pork chops. Tonight, I will be making shrimp fettucini alfredo and later this week will be grilled steaks with parmesan risotto. I make my alfredo sauce from scratch and it is so good. This is the recipe I use for it.

Hitting:

I have been hitting the snooze button all week. With the crazy cold weather, I have gotten sick. It was bound to happen sooner or later this winter. Other than sleeping in I hadn’t really felt the effects of it until this weekend.  So I am laying low and relaxing in hopes that it won’t last long.

Check out the FB Blogger Tribe group for a list of future Sunday Lately topics. I hope you will join us! What are you needing, cooking, or hitting this week?

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Sunday Lately: Quoting, Signing, Thanking

We are moving right along with the Sunday Lately series to week 5. If you are new to Sunday Lately, it is a weekly series for the Blogger Tribe featuring three prompts to get us writing and sharing our stories from the past week. Each blogger can interpret these topics however they choose in their post. Then we all link back to Katy to share with each other. This week we are talking about quoting, signing, and thanking.

Quoting:

This past week I have been doing a bit of price quoting for alterations and custom gowns. I have a few alterations to finish up this weekend for a client going on a cruise next week. Talk about jealous of getting out of this cold weather! Then, of course, prom season is upon us and I am here for it. I have the most amazing custom prom dress coming up. Unfortunately, I won’t be sharing it with you until April, when her prom is. Sorry, it’s a secret! I will tell you there will be custom dyeing involved though.

Signing:

I really didn’t do any signing this week. With the Polar Vortex storm that hit the midwest, I haven’t left the house much this week. I honestly have had trouble finding the motivation to do much of anything all week.  It is so bad, that I cut out two different projects for the PR sewing bee and I didn’t start one until the day before the deadline. Needless to say, that was a terrible idea and I didn’t finish it. So, I dropped out of round two. Fail!  I need to finish that dress this week before it sits too long and becomes part of the UFO pile.

Thanking:

I want to give a big thank you to all the Indie pattern designers who really listened to what the plus size community was saying. Thank you for acknowledging your missteps in responding to us and recognizing where you need to do better. Read more about them by clicking on their Instagram posts below.

Grainline Studios

Closet Case Patterns

By Hand London

Papercut Patterns

I also want to thank Bridgette Raes for her timely post on curvy body double standards.  If you don’t know who Bridgette is, she is a published author and public speaker on style and image. She really doesn’t have anything to do with the sewing community but her post this week really hit it on the mark for all the discussions that were going on last week on Instagram. She talks about her experience being told her curvy body was too much and she needed to tone it down. This article is beautifully written and I encourage everyone to read it.

 

Check out the FB Blogger Tribe group for a list of future Sunday Lately topics. I hope you will join us! What are you quoting, signing, and thanking this week?

 

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Sunday Lately: Sharing, Thinking, Redoing

Week 4 of the 2019 Sunday Lately series is the best because it is my birthday week! If you are new to Sunday Lately, it is a weekly series for the Blogger Tribe featuring three prompts to get us writing and sharing our stories from the past week. Each blogger can interpret these topics however they choose in their post. Then we all link back to Katy to share with each other. This week we are talking about sharing, thinking, and redoing.

Sharing:

I am happy to share that I made to round 2 of the Pattern Review Sewing Bee. The round 2 challenge is all about zippers, functionally and creatively. We are to make a garment that features at least one functional zipper by Thursday the 31st.  Like the last time, I farted around for two days trying to decide what I wanted to do.  The very first thought was a moto jacket, but then I figured that would be too obvious. Then I was going to make another take on the Grainline Cascade, but decided since I have already made and reviewed one on PR it wouldn’t be anything new and then Friday happened (see below) so it was definitely out the window. In the end, I decided on using OOP Butterick B5994 from kAthRine Tilton. It will be my first time using one from the Kathrine Tilton line. Typically, I do not share the same aesthetic she designs for, but I really like this take on a moto jacket. It is intended for medium to heavy knits but I am actually using a lighter weight dark denim with a little bit of iridescent white shimmer that I have been stashing since 2004-2005ish, so it was time I used it. I ordered a few gray zippers from Wawak that should hopefully arrive in time. I wanted contrasting zippers so they really stand out. In addition to the front closure zipper, I plan on adding zippers to the inseam pockets that will also stand out against the dark denim. I hope that it all comes together and looks good enough to advance to round 3.

Thinking:

On Friday, I shared my thoughts on the recent discussions on sewing plus size inclusivity. A few months ago there was a lot of great discussion about the representation of BIPOC in the sewing community. Not just on patterns, but fabric companies, sewing magazines, and sewing machine brands. It has me thinking a lot about my pattern line and how I can give everyone a voice. I already knew I was going to include plus sizes that would feature all sorts of different real women of different shapes, sizes, and colors, but I have been thinking more about how to represent the LBGTQ community and those with disabilities.

I have a local woman who I met because she needed a 36″ zipper added to the outside seam of her jeans. She is an above knee amputee (AKA) and the zipper made it easier to adjust her socket. She went to several alterations shops in town and was told they could not do that. I absolutely did it for her. Her disability wasn’t one she ever saw coming a few years ago. She had a knee replacement that went septic and had to be amputated. She has an amazing attitude towards her disability. In just over a year of being an amputee; she has become an advocate for amputee awareness, made her presence known at the yearly amp conference, and she has created an annual amputee retreat.  She has taught me so much that I want to recognize her for all that she is and will do for her community. I would like her to be one of the first women I feature in my designs.

Redoing:

This weekend I am redoing my Make Nine for 2019. Three of the patterns in it were Closet Case and as I am choosing not to support those who do not make the curvy sewing niche a priority, I needed to pick some new things to make. I have replaced those with a couple of Laele Jeyne patterns for her Dani Joggers (top left corner) and Scarlett Jeans (bottom right corner). I bought the Dani’s this weekend and now am dying over the moto jeans view for the Scarlett’s. I also added the Cashmerette Chilton Trench (middle row right) because I still want to make a spring jacket. Those Dani’s are first up, but I won’t be sharing the finished project until March for the Breaking Ground blog tour.

 

Check out the FB Blogger Tribe group for a list of future Sunday Lately topics. I hope you will join us! What are you sharing, thinking, and redoing this week?

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On Being Curvy

There have been a lot of discussions over the last few days in the curvy sewing community about plus size inclusivity by indie pattern designers. I have quietly sat on the sidelines listening and taking it all in. Then I read Carolyn’s blog post and had to take action. It was a reawakening. She straight just named names and called them out! She gave her rules of thumb in regards to this. I applaud her for that and what’s more is she is absolutely right! For far too long we have still been supporting, both on social media and financially,  pattern designers who don’t support us. If you are new to the conversation check out the SBCC post that sparked it all. Then read Andi’s post and Shannon’s post. After reading some of the comments on SBCC’s IG post from some of the indie designers I am done with them. I have supported them with my money and praise for far too long now. It’s a shame too because they do make good patterns with great instructions, but they do not serve me and my niche.

I can tell you that their excuses for not making plus size are a bunch of bullshit. From my personal experience in the garment industry as a pattern maker and grader for a garment manufacturer, we went from a size 2-32 and did custom made to measure for those who were bigger or smaller than that size range. Granted, I worked in a very specific performance costume niche, so it wasn’t really mass produced RTW, but the point stands that if a small family run company can do it so can the larger ones. There was a need and the company I worked for filled it.  There were dress forms from size 2 all the way up.  When my co-technical designer and I reworked and updated the fit and sizing of the patterns, we made samples in every size and fit them on real-life women of every size in the size range who regularly wore our costumes to make sure they worked. Yes, it takes more money and time up front, but the payoff is there in the end. The previous sizing model was 30 years old and we updated and expanded it to fit the modern body measurements of our customers. It can and should be done for the pattern industry as well. It isn’t that hard.

It all comes down to priorities. While the indie designers may repeatedly say over and over “if we could, we would” when asked about expanding sizes, what they are really saying is that doing so is not a priority to them. Look past the excuses they give for not offering extended ranges to see the truth for what it is. That we and in turn, our money is not important to them. You wouldn’t put up with friends or significant others who do not view you as a priority, so why should you support companies that don’t? If the plus size market were a priority, those designers would make it happen. Look at Helen’s Closet, for example. She launched in 2015 and currently has 6 patterns in her shop. She is now expanding her range this year, less than 4 years after launching.  She heard the community and truly listened. She made it a priority to serve us as well.  Now look at Closest Case, Heather Lou launched in 2013 with one PDF swimsuit. She now offers 11 print patterns, 18 PDF patterns, and a whole host of supply kits but only expanded her range from 0-18 to 0-20. I cannot believe it is all about money and time and not finding the right testers/fit models. The contrast between these two businesses tells me I am not important enough for Closet Case to care about me as a maker, so I will stop spending my money there.

I am adopting some of Carolyn’s policies by unfollowing and no longer purchasing those designers who do not go up to my size range and beyond. This includes Grainline and Closet Case. It is disappointing because I would love to support a local Chicago indie designer like Jen from Grainline. She did say she would be expanding their range, but there was no mention of how much further it would go and I cannot even find that statement anymore.** If and when she does, I will support them again. I have also spent hundreds of dollars on Closet Case patterns that I have yet to make because of the grading work I will have to do on my end. But it is no longer worth it for me. I can tell you, the number of accounts I follow in Instagram and on Bloglovin’ just got a lot lighter. Hopefully, my inbox will get a bit less crowded too with all the newsletter unsubscribing.

So let’s talk about the indies who do have a larger range that I enjoy and follow. Maybe there is one or two you don’t follow or haven’t tried yet.

  1. Cashmerette – I think Jenny is arguably one of the biggest names in the plus size community.  She has been honest about her plus-size struggles from the start.
  2. Bella Sunshine Designs – Melissa has a great line of PDF patterns that go up to a size 30 and already include the dreaded FBA. In full disclosure, the link is my affiliate link and I do regularly pattern test for her. It is because I truly believe in her pattern line for plus size sewists. I have seen how important getting the fit right for all sizes is to her.
  3. Laela Jeyne –  I must admit that I have not tried Marisa’s patterns yet, but I am going to use them for this years Breaking Ground blog tour in March. Her style aesthetic really meshes with mine and I am pretty excited to try the Dani joggers!
  4. Colette/Seamwork – Sarai did expand the size range to include plus sizes which is awesome. I have some issues with her pattern drafting as a drafter/grader myself, but her stuff is still wearable and she has taken the steps to represent more inclusivity with not just sizing but race and age.

There are a lot more indie designers that you can find on the Curvy Sewing Collective list. I recommend checking them out and trying out their patterns.

**Update: Grainline did post on their IG in response to the buzz that they are releasing extended sizes later this year.

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Sunday Weekly: Losing, Pairing, Surprising

Here we are with week 3 of the 2019 Sunday Lately series! If you are new to Sunday Lately, it is a weekly series for the Blogger Tribe featuring three prompts to get us writing and sharing our stories from the past week. Each blogger can interpret these topics however they choose in their post. Then we all link back to Katy to share with each other. This week we are talking about losing, pairing, and surprising.

Losing:

I have been in this sewing funk since the first of the year. I haven’t cut a single piece of fabric until this week. I had a lost sewing mojo even though I keep finding all sorts of inspiration and things I want to make. This week I completed my entry for the Sewing Bee (see Pairing) and I completed a pattern test for Bella Sunshine Designs (affiliate link). I am actually working on a second pattern test for BSD today.  Both are fantastic and getting me to sew things I have never sewn before! Which, honestly, isn’t much. I will post more about those patterns once they are released though.

Pairing:

Last week I talked about entering the Pattern Review Sewing Bee. I ended up not using any of the fabrics or patterns I had pulled out. Nothing called to me. Then I remembered that I had these fantastic coral jeggings that I don’t wear often because I don’t have much to wear with them. I went looking for neutrals instead and found the super soft gray lightweight sweater knit that I paired with McCall’s 6844. I knew I wanted to add some more visual appeal to it so I drafted pockets and handstitched sequins and pearls to them. You can read my full review here.

Surprising:

Do you know how surprisingly easy it is to make ice cream? I didn’t! For Christmas Eric and I got the ice cream maker attachments for our Kitchenaid Stand Mixer. Last Sunday I made French vanilla ice cream to test it out. No joke, it was some of the best I have had.  Today I am making cookie’s and cream while Eric is baking a giant cookie bar.  It should be a pretty good combo.

Eric is typically a fan of anything chocolate, peanut butter, and nutty in his. I, on the other hand, don’t like any of those things in mine. Give me fruit in my ice cream any day. The only exceptions to that are cookies and cream, salted caramel, and marshmallow. I have started a Pinterest board just for ice cream recipes to try this year.  The top of my list is a lemon batch and a peaches batch. Do you have any good ice cream recipes?

Check out the FB Blogger Tribe group for a list of future Sunday Lately topics. I hope you will join us! What are you losing, pairing, and surprising with this week?

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Sunday Lately: Embarking, Enjoying, Experimenting


It is week 2 of the 2019 Sunday Lately series! If you are new to Sunday Lately, it is a weekly series for the Blogger Tribe featuring three prompts to get us writing and sharing our stories from the past week. Each blogger can interpret these topics however they choose in their post. Then we all link back to Katy to share with each other. This week we are talking about embarking, enjoying, and experimenting.

Embarking:

Last week I shared about my new adventure in 18th-century history and this week I have a much clearer idea of where to go with my costume. I am using Simplicity 8579 for my chemise and corset. I am making those two items first because I will need to take new measurements once I have the corset on in order to cut and sew the right size for the caraco (bodice) and skirt. The blue fabric above is what I will be using for the corset. It is a pretty heavy duty woven drapery cotton from the 80’s. It was actually given to me just a couple of weeks ago, so I am glad it won’t have a chance to hang out in my stash too long.

I know I will be using McCall’s 7916 for the caraco and skirt pieces, but I have not settled on fabric yet. As of right now, I am thinking I want to do a brown wool caraco and a mustard yellow skirt. A trip to Zinck’s Fabric Outlet in Ligonier, IN is in order to find some lightweight wools for these, so my colors will probably change depending on what they have. I think Zinck’s will be my best option though because of how inexpensive their fabrics are. Last time I got some army green wool for $2.99/yard, that is how cheap I am talking! I have been wanting to build up my stash of vintage Talon zippers too and this is where I got the first few from, so it’s just one more reason to go.  I haven’t been there in a couple of years, since before we moved to Chicago, and now it is a 3-hour trip each way. Maybe sometime in February. Any Chicago Sewists or quilters up for a day trip with me? Maybe even go to Shipshewana to do some more fabric shopping?

Enjoying:

This past week I have really been enjoying getting caught up on podcasts.  I typically let them build up so I can binge them while sewing or cleaning.  I am all current with most of the regular ones I listen to like Stitcher’s Brew, Love to Sew, and Make & Decorate so I have been binging years worth of others like Modern Sewciety, Dressed, and Clothes Making Mavens. If you have any other good sewing related podcasts let me know. I am always on the hunt for more.

Other than sewing related podcasts I also enjoy business ones. They really are the motivational get-off-my-ass-and-do-something push I need. The best one is Mimi G’s Business SHET. She gives it to you straight with no sugar coating things. Smart Passive Income is also great, while not every episode is relevant to the sewing niche that I want to pursue there are still some great general tips and ideas for me to try to implement. I also subscribe to Being Boss, but I haven’t started it just yet. I gotta get caught up on the others first.

Then, of course, there is Serial. If you don’t know about Serial by now, I am not sure what to tell you. I am addicted to this one. Season 3 was great and really just pissed me off all at the same time. Sarah and her team illustrated how unjust the justice system in Cleveland is. It is infuriating to listen to these stories of people trying to do the right thing and making up for the wrongs they have committed but being systemically held back. I listened to this right around midterm elections last year and while I cannot directly affect change in Cleveland, it did make me pay more attention to the judicial candidates on my ballot.  I did a bit of research on their careers and cases to make my informed decision.

Experimenting:

Pattern Review announced the 2019 Sewing Bee contest this past week and the first round started on Friday (1/11).  Each week there will be a different challenge for sewists to interpret and then the panel of judges will determine who moves on to the next weeks round. There are four rounds in total. There are some great prizes, including $100 Fabric Mart gift certificate. Yes, please! I have not previously participated in this challenge but I am going to give it a shot this year.

The first theme is to make a knit cardigan inspired by the 2019 Pantone Color of the Year, Living Coral. I have a few pieces of coral knit in my stash. I pulled them and a few cardigan patterns out to experiment with different combinations. I have until Saturday (1/19) to make, photograph, and upload my review. I will, of course, share it here too. Stay tuned near the end of the week for that.

Check out the FB Blogger Tribe group for a list of future Sunday Lately topics. I hope you will join us! What are you embarking, enjoying, and experimenting with this week?

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